If you download or install a variety of programs then you’ll know that it’s important to have a clean version of your computer's image – this is an exact copy of the OS, including all your programs as well as the latest updates.
If your hard drive fails and you need to make a fresh install, think how long it will take to re-install all your programs, as well as download all the updates you’ve made over the lifetime of the machine. For £40 (inc. VAT), this program takes the hassle out of that decision as you simply reload your PC's image from the boot disc.
It’s a quick and easy install and the interface has a new look, which has been considerably simplified. As with the previous version, it works with Windows Vista as well as XP. No longer will you have to wade through tabs on the side of the screen, as there are now four large buttons that drop down into sub menus. It’s not the easiest interface to get to grips with but once you’ve run through the backup process a couple of times it’s fairly obvious.
As you would expect of imaging software, it creates a complete clone of your OS and folders. The first time you run the wizard you’ll need to run a full backup but after that, incremental backups can be scheduled to run whenever it suits you best.
Setting up the software is incredibly easy and the main core of the tools, cloning and backing up your hard drive, as well as making a usable boot disc are reliable.
On the downside, we did find that to make the most of this software you’ll need quite a powerful specification, as our dual-core notebook showed signs of slowing down when we first ran the program.
In order to differentiate itself, you’ll find a number of new tools have been added. So, you’ll find Drive Cleanser, File Shredder and System Cleanup utilities, which as their names suggest help you get rid of unwanted data, as well as offering to speed up your PC. We found they worked incredibly well and certainly add to the value of the package.
Try & Decide is the best on offer as it creates a zone in quick you can test out new software, or even open email attachments without them being accessible to the main OS. If they work, then you can apply the changes to your system directly. This is great as it means you don’t have to run the risk of software crashing your PC.
We’ve always been impressed with what Acronis True Image has to offer and while on the surface this version 11 Home doesn’t add tot he core features, it remains impressively reliable.
The additional tools add to the value and also improve the security of your PC, making this an essential purchase for anyone who lacks imaging software and a worthy upgrade for those with older versions.